WillPower! is our Education Outreach Program that works in collaboration with public and private schools throughout central North Carolina, to place a trained professional theatre artist in school for residencies from one day to 6 weeks in duration. WillPower! was developed to educate high school students about the creative works of William Shakespeare, along with voice, movement and playwriting. Led by Burning Coal’s Director of Education.


Taught by Burning Coal's Education Director

Willpower! is Burning Coal’s Education Outreach program for public and private schools throughout central North Carolina.  This program was founded in our second season (1998/99).  The residencies bring a trained, professional theatre artist into the school to conduct a workshop or performance with the drama, theatre, or English classes.

Originally developed to educate elementary, middle, and high school students about the works of William Shakespeare, it has since developed into a tailored curriculum for students covering topics such as the art of voice, musical theatre, movement, and playwriting.

Whether you are looking for assistance in staging a production, new ways to approach Shakespeare, to strengthen your students’ voices and give them additional physical tools, or gain new perspectives and methods to enrich your student’s classroom experience, Burning Coal’s guest artists bring both advanced training and our signature passion. 

Every residency is custom designed to meet the needs of each individual class and instructor.

Residency Examples

6 Weeks

Shakespeare to Performance- A series of workshops and rehearsals culminating in a full production of a Shakespearean play, directed by the Teaching Artist.

Production Assistance- The teaching artist will provide support on a school-sponsored production. Support includes workshops, general production help, or the direction of the production.

4 Weeks

Playwriting Intensive- A complete playwriting curriculum designed to inspire even students who aren’t “writers” to find their own voice.

Acting Styles-A course designed to introduce students to various acting styles (performance art, absurdist, period movement, etc) outside conventional realism.

2 Weeks

Theatre History- A survey of theatre history from Ancient Greece, through the Medieval Ages, the Renaissance, and the European movements of the 19th century, all the way toward the innovations of the 20th century. 

Devised Theatre- A crash course in one of the most exciting, cutting-edge forms of theatre today, which emphasizes collaboration and creativity. Concludes with a performance of a student-devised show.

1 Week

Viewpoints- An in-depth exploration of the acting/ensemble methods popularized by Anne Bogart and the SITI Company, with classes covering character creation and ensemble work.

Playwriting- An introduction to playwriting, designed to demystify the playwriting process and encourage self-expression. 

AND MANY MORE! Custom tailored curriculum courses available in every theatrical discipline with flexible residency lengths. We look forward to working with you to design a curriculum that meets YOUR needs!

If you would like to bring Burning Coal’s WillPower! program to your school, contact us at 919.834.4001 or by email at coalartisticdir@ncrrbiz.com.


Past Productions & Events

The following shows/events have passed.